Paladin And Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy – A Success Story!


Early referral and appropriate treatment, with collaboration between the board-certified veterinary cardiologists at CVCA Cardiac Care for Pets (CVCA), and Paladin’s primary care veterinarian, resulted in a longer, healthier life with his family.

Paladin, John Kennedy’s beautiful, male, black kitty
lived for 13 years with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
(HCM) thanks to the life-saving treatment he received
at CVCA. Paladin walked into Mr. Kennedy’s life in
August 1997 as a cat living on the streets near Mr.
Kennedy’s home. During Halloween of that year, Mr.
Kennedy became concerned for Paladin’s safety, as
a black cat wandering the streets on a high-traffic
night could meet with unfortunate consequences.
Reluctantly, Mr. Kennedy brought him inside where
he successfully introduced him to Mr. Kennedy’s
other cats, Oliver and Mimi.

At six years of age, on a routine physical examination,
Paladin was diagnosed with a heart murmur by his
primary care veterinarian, Dr. Anne Sinclair at Cat
Sense. His veterinarian recommended a consultation
with the cardiologists at CVCA. At their first visit with
Dr. McGregor Ferguson, Paladin was diagnosed with
HCM, the most common heart disease in cats. This is
a disease in which the heart muscle becomes thicker
than normal and can cause irregular heartbeats, sudden
death, heart enlargement, and congestive heart
failure. It is usually a genetic/inherited condition and
is common in young, male cats, like Paladin. Mr. Kennedy
was frightened and worried when he heard the
diagnosis—this was serious! He was concerned that
Paladin only had a few months to live, but, thankfully,
his first impression was wrong. Dr. Ferguson placed
Paladin on medications that helped stabilize his heart
disease, prevent blood clots and prevent progression
of the heart enlargement.

It took a while to figure out how to administer the
medications, but, fortunately, Paladin enjoyed taking
his medications in baby food. Over the years, Paladin
saw various cardiologists at CVCA Cardiac Care for
Pets who worked with his primary care veterinarian,
Dr. Sinclair, to optimize Paladin’s therapy and his
condition improved, and stabilized for many years.

Paladin eventually crossed the Rainbow Bridge on
January 11, 2016 at 19 years of age, due to complications
unrelated to his heart disease. Because of
the prompt referral from his primary care veterinarian,
Paladin was able to receive early and ongoing
treatments. By co-managing Paladin’s care with his
primary care veterinarian, CVCA Cardiac Care for Pets
helped Paladin survive HCM for 13 years. Fortunately,
HCM does not have to be fatal – don’t delay an early
diagnosis and treatment.